#5 Burying Distrust of Motives, a Deafening Barrier to Real Communication, Learning and Change

The on a metal bridge the four towers which support the 2 large suspender cable are each supported by foundations, so to for our mental bridge. On a physical bridge the 2 sets of adjacent towers are connected by a cross beam that supports the girder to form a sorta a giant H. The 2 sets of towers on our psychological bridge will be connected too. The first set, the distrust of motives set, could be either set as the occupants of both the Greenville and Growthton equally and unreasonably distrust the motives of their opponents.

The Greenville proponents of the Global Warming Theory [GWT] truly believe that their opponent's beliefs are informed by the lying, fact spinning, authority bribing, selfish fossil fuel industry and/or the prognostications of religious 'seers' who tell them that their all knowing imaginary being, "God", is sovereign over creation and therefore humans can do no permanent damage to its creation...and there are folks who unquestionably fall into parts or all of this framework. But, and this is one of the major points The Mud Report will be arguing loud and clear from upon the bridge deck once it's built, the opponents of GWT aren't just dizzy dunderheads blindly following the spin doctors. There are scientific uncertainties, lots of 'em, and despite having all of the best intentions, the Greenville folks have just as much trouble accepting information contrary to their belief system as the Growthton folks and the rest of us do.

The Growthton opponents of GWT are equally convinced that the proponents are being duped/spun by a gang of self-serving scientists who's goals are acquiring grants for themselves and their institutions by getting dubious/sensational papers published by a church-type peer review process that never accepts anything outside the paradigm of their belief system or any song not sung by their choir. Despite them also having the best of intentions, the Growthton folks also refuse to accept any of the scientific uncertainties or results that don't validate their cherished beliefs. They too see those in the other encampment as being used by the spinners in science and the lamestream media in a giant conspiracy to enrich certain individuals and 'green' industries and in so doing impoverish those now invested in the non-'green' parts of the capitalist matrix.

Both solitudes rally their teammates, in part, around this distrust of their opponents motives. Both use this canard of distrust as a fall back position whenever they have no logical argument to immediately counter their opponents position. It's easy to see this type of communicable psychosis in action in almost every type of group human confrontation. Check it out, do the opponents in  Palestine and Israel listen to each other in an attempt to have an intelligent discourse? How about the Hindus and Muslims? The West and the 'Terrorists'? How about the overheated fans of rival sports teams or...

Only by listening can we really hear. Only by burying our prejudices about our opponents, including those about their underlying motives, can we really listen to their positions. Only by really listening and hearing the arguments of those that oppose us can we learn from them and counter their positions logically. Logic requires that every argument [thesis], even the most universally agreed upon, is only conditionally accepted. As soon as a valid counter argument [antithesis] comes to light the old argument is either thrown out completely in favour of the new or, more often, the two are amalgamated [synthesis], but in either case the newly accepted argument, the synthesis, becomes the new thesis which then is just as open to counter-argument as the original was. This is the basis of the scientific method. But without being able to listen and hear the contents of an antithesis because of deafening prejudices no change, no learning, no synthesis will ever be possible.

So today, hopefully, another of the deafening prejudices, the distrust of our opponents motives, will get buried mafia style in out communication bridge's tower foundations and good riddance to it. Tomorrow we'll head over to the last set of tower foundations where we'll try to turn the penchant both solitudes has for using hyperbole to gain the attention of the public through fear mongering and how the media's addiction to the most sensational hyperbolic headline almost always ends up rallying one encampment or the other at the expense of real learning or communication.